Monthly Archives: December 2010

gratitude journal

Well, sociology might not know yet where and exactly when its annual meetings will be, but they won’t be held in the last week of December in Boston, like other professional associations one could name (HT: Kieran).

scatterplot is famous, yet again!

Or, at least Andy Perrin is! Congrats, Andy! Picture in the NY Times! I’m wondering how many orgtheorists can say that? In all seriousness, the piece picks up on what Andy has been saying on scatterplot about grade inflation, for some time. So yes, scatterplot scooped the Times.

andy perrin on grade inflation

Our discussion of grade inflation continues in the NY Times today, and I must say, Andy looks very serious about it all. Also, happy Boxing Day–the holiday where all Canadians squeeze across the border into Buffalo to watch the World Juniors hockey tournament. I’ll see you there.

hoop dreams

What the eagerness of college presidents to have Div I athletics has wrought: The following basketball teams comprise an actual, current college basketball conference (the Great West): Chicago State University, Houston Baptist “University”, New Jersey Institute of Technology, University of North Dakota, University of South Dakota, University of Texas-Pan American, Utah Valley University.


Just because I’m in Australia doesn’t mean I’m not following the news back home. Here is the Chicago Tribune’s writeup of ASA announcing it isn’t going to Chicago. Critic tho’ I often am of ASA, I think we come across pretty well here, actually.

asa 2011 up for grabs!

Chicago is out. What does the blogging lobby have to say about where ASA 2011 should be? Des Moines?

class and the tax-cut debate

One of the (many) things that’s frustrating about the current debate over extending the Bush tax cuts is the meme that, well, 250 grand just isn’t what it used to be. Why, in some places it’s just enough to make ends meet! Media Matters carries an excellent take-down of an LA Times fluff story that […]

adventures in amman

I’m in Amman, Jordan. I’m here to teach social science methodology to Jordanian civil servants. It’s part of a “Global Centers” project of Columbia’s. I have some mixed feelings about these centers, but that’s for another post. So far, the course has been really fascinating, and rewarding. It’s quite an experience to talk to policy […]

most concise paper ever published

H/T my friend Phil Spiro:  

who are our customers?

It is becoming more and more common to hear about the “customers” of higher education. I will go on record, unsurprisingly, as saying that I do not like this language. However, since it is becoming so common, I think it’s worth reflecting too on who these customers are, and also what the product is that […]

asa audit information

Neal Caren points out to me that ASA does have a page called “Audit of Financial Records”. There isn’t a link to the page on the ASA site, as far as I can tell. And the last year it has was 2007. That appears to say that publications brought in about 3 million and cost […]

asa tax returns

OK, so, within minutes of my previous post, a reader* sent me ASA’s 2008 Form 990 tax return. Nonprofit tax returns are apparently a matter of public record and all you have to do is register at and start searching. Want to compare the 2008 sociology return to the returns for economics, political science, […]


OK, so, partly due to my bygone days as an active and charming blogger, I am an elected member of the ASA publications committee. We meet twice a year: once at the ASA meetings, and then we met last weekend in Washington, DC. It’s a big meeting: 6 members, the president, secretary/treasurer, 8 editors, 2 […]

you don’t even want to think about what they do to contractions

Dear Students, I realize that we’re approaching the end of the semester and I, like all of you, am very tired. Indeed, I feel like a dehydrated man crawling painfully through a desert lusting after the cool, refreshing waters of yon oasis. Granted, yon oasis is, in my case, a mirage since the end of […]

ses and life course isomorphism

The scene in the parking lot at my son’s school yesterday, for the holiday sing-along: Generally the parking lot has about 40% Odysseys, 40% Priuses, and 20% assorted others. Convergence?  


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